• St. Augustine business owners look back at Hurricane Matthew, they look ahead to Michael

    By: Amber Krycka , Action News Jax

    Updated:

    Sunday marked two years since Hurricane Matthew grazed our shoreline.

    As people look back at one hurricane, they’re looking ahead to another.

    “We’ve implemented our emergency plan so everybody is on standby,” said Tom Dolan, who owns at Meehan’s Irish Pub.

    “We’ve put extra plywood on, with sealant on these two areas,” said Fran Charlson, executive director of Ayla’s Acres no-kill animal rescue thrift shop.

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    Charlson said shi is not taking any chances of having a tree fall in her backyard.

    If the tree gets too much water, she fears it will fall on top of her store.

    “So they are going to take it out tomorrow, the day before the hurricane is supposed to hit,” she said.

    “We will feel the effects of coastal flooding, some heavy rain, on the outskirts of (Interstate) 95 to our city,” said Bob Growick, the fire marshal at the St. Augustine Fire Department.

    Growick said he’s been in close communication with city leaders, talking with them every couple of hours.

    “Start preparing now,” he said.

    Business owners said they hope this hurricane won’t be as bad as Matthew. But if it is, they’ll be ready, because they’ve been through it before.

    “I’m cautiously optimistic about Michael, because it's going up the Gulf Coast. We’ve been keeping our fingers crossed,” Charlson said.

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